Pacific Pinball Museum
The Majorettes pinball machine at the Pacific Pinball Museum
|Location||Alameda, California, USA|
The museum was founded in 2004 by Michael Schiess, a former museum exhibition designer. Schiess started collecting pinball machines in 2001. He decided to open his own museum after being unimpressed with the coverage of pinball history at other museums. One of his first major acquisitions was thirty-six machines in one purchase. Fourteen of them were installed in a rented room, which Schiess called Lucky Ju Ju, in Alameda and a jar was placed out for donations. In 2004 the facility expanded and became a nonprofit, renaming itself the Pacific Pinball Museum. The museum expanded in 2009 displaying forty woodrail and wedge head machines from the collection of Larry Zartarian. The museum has a gift shop that sells pinball themed merchandise. It also has a museum board, and two additional staff members besides Schiess.
The museum's exhibitions include approximately ninety pinball machines ranging from 1879 until today. They are arranged in chronological order. In total, Schiess' collection comprises 800 machines. Those not on display are maintained at an 8,000-square-foot secret location. Upon paying the admission fee, visitors can play any of the machines on display. The oldest machine, from 1879, is a Montague Redgrave Parlor Bagatelle. Contemporary machines include the The Addams Family and the Twilight Zone. The museum also has a transparent pinball machine from 1976 that was built by Schiess and Wade Krause. It is based on the Gottlieb "Surf Champ" game. One of the most valued pieces in the collection is a 1930s-era Art Deco machine called the Bally Bumper. The machine was seized by police in Oakland during Prohibition. The museum's collection has also been displayed at San Francisco International Airport.
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- SF Bay Area's Pacific Pinball Museum, 19 July 2011 by David Pescovitz, BoingBoing
- Kos, Eric J. (19 November 2009). "Pacific Pinball Museum Opens". Alameda Sun. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- Santi, Dave. "PACIFIC PINBALL MUSEUM". Pinball News. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
- Northern California. Heathrow, Florida: AAA Publishing. 2012. p. 43.
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